Let’s face it: Who wouldn’t want to look like a superhero?
One look at any Marvel comic should make it clear that superheroes are fit, trim, and oh-so strong. But, if you’ve always thought that getting superhero-fit is an impossible task for us mere mortals, think again.
Chris Evans, a.k.a. Captain America, recently shared his diet plan and workout routine for his casting on Captain America: The First Avenger and its 2 sequels. So yes, you too, can train just like a Marvel superhero.
Coming up, we’ll discuss the ins and outs of the Chris Evans Workout. We’ll clue you in on what it took for Evans to turn into Captain America so you can decide if a similar training plan is right for you.
Who Is Chris Evans?
Chris Evans is an American actor that’s best known for his work in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Although he’s most famous for his role as Captain America, he got his start in the Marvel world when he played Johnny Storm/Human Torch in the 2005 film Fantastic Four.
After that, Evans played in many different superhero-themed films, including:
- Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer (2007)
- The Losers (2010)
- Scott Pilgrim vs. the World (2010)
- Captain America: The First Avenger (2011)
- Marvel’s The Avengers (2012)
- Captain America: The Winter Soldier (2014)
- Avengers: Age of Ultron (2015)
- Captain America: Civil War (2016)
- Avengers: Infinity War (2019)
- Avengers: Endgame (2019)
As you can see, Evans is no stranger to bodybuilding, which was vital to his physical appearance in these roles. For each of these roles, particularly the ones where he portrayed Captain America, he stuck to a particular workout routine and diet to maintain his physique.
What’s great about Chris Evans’ Captain America Workout, though, is that Evans is a (relatively) average-sized guy. At about 6′ (183cm) tall and 180lbs (81.6kg) in weight, Evans isn’t exactly an overwhelmingly large person.
Sure, this might not seem like a big deal. But, for people who are average height and naturally slim like Evans, fitness and dieting advice coming from someone like him seems a bit more relevant than from someone like the 6’5″ (196cm), 260lbs (118kg) Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson.
What Is The Captain America Workout Routine?
When Evans first landed the role of Captain America, he needed to work hard to build up a fit, muscular frame. The answer? The Captain America Workout.
Okay, sure, he probably didn’t call it that, but Evans basically is Captain America now, so we think it’s a worthy title for his workout routine. Here’s what you need to know about Evans’ transformation into a full-on superhero.
Evans’ workout routine focused on building up lean muscle mass as fast as possible. These are the key takeaway points from his training program:
- High Weight, Low Reps – Much of his training emphasized high weight, low rep sets of the most commonly used lifts, such as deadlifts, bench presses, and squats.
- Incorporate Bodyweight Exercises & Calisthenics – Evans also incorporated plenty of bodyweight exercises and plyometrics to ensure that his heart rate stayed at a relatively high rate throughout his workouts.
- Stay Balanced – Unlike many actors that focus on ‘vanity’ muscles (like the biceps and pecs), Evans and his trainer understood the importance of working every muscle group during training.
- Rotate Muscle Groups – Each day, Evans would focus on 2 muscle groups, such as the biceps and triceps, and work just on those for 2 hours. At the end of the session, he’d finish up with some core exercises.
- Mix Things Up – Evans’ workouts incorporated various angles and grips with each lift. Examples include using incline press-ups and kneeling shoulder presses to work in different smaller muscles.
- Take Rest Days – Throughout his training program, Evans would lift on Sunday through Friday and then take rest days on Saturdays. Doing so ensured that his muscles had enough time to fully recuperate after a week of training.
- Keep Cardio To A Minimum – As we learned in the Saitama One Punch Man Workout, too much cardio can actually affect overall muscle size gains. As such, it makes sense that Evans kept pure cardio, like running, to a minimum during his training. Instead, he opted to do circuits and plyometrics, which help you build muscle rather than lose weight.
What does this all look like when put together, you might ask?
Here’s a sample Captain America Workout schedule that follows these basic principles from Evans’ training program. While this isn’t the precise routine that Chris Evans used, it does integrate all the key points of his fitness philosophy.
Remember, all lifts should be done with high weights, low reps at a level that is appropriate for your needs. Also, be sure to warm up properly before lifting to help avoid injuries. If you’re new to lifting, consider getting professional guidance from a certified trainer before you start.
Sunday: Lower Body
- Back squats
- Leg press
- Calf raise
- Box jumps
- Hamstring curls
Monday: Upper Body
- Incline dumbbell press
- Military press
- Inverted rows
- Z press
Tuesday: Lower Body
- Front squats
- Leg press
- Jumping lunges
- Calf raises
- Trap bar deadlifts
Wednesday: Upper Body
- Incline bench press
- Bent over rows
- Kneeling shoulder press
- One-arm dumbbell row
Thursday: Core & Upper Body
- Weighted crunches
- Leg raises
- Bicycle crunches
- Overhead dumbbell extensions
- Barbell curls
Recovery day (light cardio)
Saturday: Rest Day
Kick back, relax, or go on a walk; you deserve it!
The Captain America Chris Evans Diet
Of course, exercise is just half of the battle when it comes to creating a superhero physique. Building muscle mass just won’t happen if your body isn’t properly fueled.
When bulking up for his role as Captain America, Chris Evans followed several dieting principles, namely:
- Lots Of Protein – Evans reportedly consumed about 2g of protein per kilogram (0.03 oz per 1lb) of body weight. Most of his protein came from chicken and other lean meats, though protein shakes were a common part of his meal plan.
- Plenty of Salad – To ensure that he got enough overall nutrition for his physically-taxed body, Evans also consumed large amounts of dark, leafy greens, particularly in salads.
- Complex Carbs – Evans tried to eat a balanced diet that was high in protein without slacking off on veggies and complex carbs. Brown rice and oats were reportedly a popular part of his daily food consumption.
- Smart Supplements – Since regular weight training can take a toll on your muscles, Evans also boosted his nutritional intake with plenty of supplements. He often used glutamine, branched-chain amino acids, omega-6, omega-3, and omega-9s for proper joint functioning and recovery.
Is the Chris Evans Workout Right For Me?
Anyone that’s watched any of Chris Evans’ Captain America films knows that he managed to create a pretty insane physique through his training and dieting. His training plan is robust and follows some commonly accepted principles for building muscle mass without putting on too much body fat.
On a similar note, the Captain America Workout is equally intense. For the most part, it’s best for folks who are already experienced with weight training as lifting 5-6 days a week can put a lot of stress on your body.
Therefore, the Chris Evans Workout is a solid choice for people (with a solid base of physical fitness) that want to build muscle mass and strength. If you’re someone that’s just starting to get into weight training, something like the Starting Strength Routine might be a better introduction.
Of course, it’s worth remembering that no workout plan is guaranteed to give you results like Chris Evans. Your physique results from a complex series of factors, which include diet, exercise, sleep, and genetics.
If you’re interested in switching up your training regime, the Chris Evans Workout is a fun, varied, and intense option for experienced weight lifters looking to take their fitness to a new level.